Samuel Chukwueze on the Comeback Trail

Samuel Chukwueze on the Comeback Trail


He was a reported transfer target for Liverpool last summer but struggles for form and fitness have punctuated Samuel Chukwueze’s season. It’s been a frustrating period for the Villareal winger but, following successful surgery on his groin injury at the start of February, the Super Eagles international is expected to return to action by the end of March.

 

That will leave Chukwueze with just a few weeks in which to help drive his team up the La Liga table but could he return to the radar of Europe’s biggest clubs?

 

First Targets

 

Before any questions over Samuel Chukwueze’s future can be addressed, he must come back and look to boost Villareal’s chances of a top four finish. After the first 24 matches of the 2020/21 La Liga season, Unai Emery’s men were in sixth position, a point ahead of Real Betis. The main aim for the club is to finish in the top four and claim a coveted Champions League slot but that’s a tough task.

 

The gap between Villareal and fourth-placed Sevilla is a mighty 11 points and it’s no surprise that few expect Emery’s men to succeed. According to sbo.net, sports betting companies in Nigeria show Villareal as a distant 4/1 chance to finish in the Champions League places while the teams currently inside the top four are all listed at odds on prices.

 

As the Spanish domestic season closes out, sbo.net will be updating those odds while offering some news and opinion on the likely outcomes. Anyone wanting to follow up with a stake on La Liga can also access offers and promotions so it’s a useful all-round site.

 

Liverpool Interest

 

Any young player wants to be performing at the highest level so Samuel Chukwueze would surely have taken note of Liverpool’s reported interest. As early as April 2020, there were rumours linking Jurgen Klopp’s side with a bid in the region of 65 million Euros.

 

Stories claiming that Chelsea were the player’s favourite English club emerged but that would have done little to dissuade Liverpool from making their move. Eventually, the rumours failed to materialize and that could have been down to the fee. As promising as he was at the time, 65 million Euros was a huge sum and it’s more likely that Liverpool, and others, would have waited to monitor Chukwueze’s progress.

 

Frustrating Time

 

Following spells in Nigerian youth football, Samuel Chukwueze joined Villareal’s young players’ academy in 2017. His progress was solid and his efforts in Spain were rewarded by recognition from Nigeria’s international set up.

 

The winger was originally called up to the full Super Eagles side in November 2018 and, since making his debut against Uganda, Chukwueze now has 17 full international caps.

 

A dip in form this season can be traced to that frustrating groin injury. Prior to his enforced break, Samuel Chukwueze played 22 times for Villareal in all competitions, scoring just twice. The player was subsequently sent to Germany for treatment and the club has since confirmed that Samuel Chukwueze’s surgery has been a success.

 

What Happens Next?

 

What happens now largely depends on how Chukwueze performs when he finally makes it back onto the field. Late March is a suggested return date and that would leave the winger with some six weeks to impress his current club and any potential future employers.

 

If he looks to be back to his best form from 2019/20, Liverpool may well come back in and renew their interest. The current English Premier League champions are enduring a poor season by their own high standards and new personnel will undoubtedly be considered at the end of this campaign.

 

Other English clubs have also been mentioned: Chukwueze may well prefer a switch to his favourite EPL side Chelsea but their London neighbours Arsenal have been more widely linked with an approach.

 

The player could have additional options in Spain where he’s made his name but English clubs come to the front of any transfer stories. Leicester City, Manchester United, and Everton have also been linked. The good news is that Samuel Chukwueze is still only young and, at 21 years of age, he has time on his side to prove his fitness before considering his next move.

 

 

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Post author: Tolu Adedayo

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